A perfect pasta to make when there's nothing left in the fridge.


  • 350 g penne pasta
  • 1 tblsp olive oil
  • 175 g piece rindless streaky bacon or streaky rashers (cut into small thin strips)
  • 1 small onion (finely chopped)
  • 2 garlic cloves (finely chopped)
  • 1 tsp sweet or smoked paprika
  • 1 red chilli (seeded and finely chopped)
  • 400 ml jar of passata
  • pinch of sugar
  • small handful fresh basil leaves, roughly torn
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Tip the penne into a pan of boiling, salted water, stir once, then cook for 10-12 minutes until 'al dente' or according to packet instructions.
  2. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in sauté pan and fry the bacon for a couple of minutes until crispy.
  3. Stir the onion into the pan and cook for another minute or two until softened, stirring occasionally.
  4. Add the garlic with paprika and chilli and cook for about 30 seconds, stirring.
  5. Stir in the passata and cook for 1-2 minutes until heated through. Add the sugar and season to taste.
  6. When the pasta is cooked, drain well and then return to the pan. Pour in the tomato mixture and add the basil, then fold everything together until well combined. Divide among warmed plates to serve.

Recipe is courtesy of Bord Bia.